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  1. #1
    Senior Tech 250+ Posts
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    Pisses me off, what do you do?

    Just saw a call come in. An HP, complaint is colors are still off, customer has changed all toner (drum print) cartridges and it made no difference. Others similar in past have occurred along with "light pages" customer tried changing toner, made no difference.

    We, as a provider, pay for these items and the customer treats it as it is no cost to them. I am not opposed to a customer trying to fix a situation. However, probably 50% or more of the time the supplies end up in the trash and tossed, even though they are good. You try to educate the customer about this, it still happens. It is a rarity that these customers actually get dinged for throwing away good supplies.

    If the customer calls in, dispatch will try to tell them to hold onto items for inspection. If they place service through web portal, often the supplies are in the dumpster before we can check them.

    My only solution to this issue is customer must return all used supplies (empty or not) to us. The complaint I hear is this would be an accounting nightmare. I say we don't need to account for returns, the customer doesn't need to know we are not accounting, it would just be a deterrent to keep good supplies from going to the trash.

    Is anyone doing anything similar? What do you do about wasted supplies?
    The difference between Democrats and Republicans is.......

    One party tells lies

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    the other party doesn't tell the truth.

  2. #2
    Service Manager 10,000+ Posts
    Pisses me off, what do you do?

    Phil B.'s Avatar
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    Re: Pisses me off, what do you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by tonerhead View Post
    Just saw a call come in. An HP, complaint is colors are still off, customer has changed all toner (drum print) cartridges and it made no difference. Others similar in past have occurred along with "light pages" customer tried changing toner, made no difference.

    We, as a provider, pay for these items and the customer treats it as it is no cost to them. I am not opposed to a customer trying to fix a situation. However, probably 50% or more of the time the supplies end up in the trash and tossed, even though they are good. You try to educate the customer about this, it still happens. It is a rarity that these customers actually get dinged for throwing away good supplies.

    If the customer calls in, dispatch will try to tell them to hold onto items for inspection. If they place service through web portal, often the supplies are in the dumpster before we can check them.

    My only solution to this issue is customer must return all used supplies (empty or not) to us. The complaint I hear is this would be an accounting nightmare. I say we don't need to account for returns, the customer doesn't need to know we are not accounting, it would just be a deterrent to keep good supplies from going to the trash.

    Is anyone doing anything similar? What do you do about wasted supplies?
    Are they calibrating the carts?

    Sent from my SM-G990U using Tapatalk

  3. #3
    Geek Extraordinaire 2,500+ Posts KenB's Avatar
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    Re: Pisses me off, what do you do?

    Similar issue here.

    Lots of “toner included” service programs.

    We used to have a “toner roundup” incentive for techs to bring back unused toner that was left behind for the previous model, and would not fit the new one. (For toner that came from us, of course.)

    The techs were comped for what they retrieved, although not very well.

    For customers who stockpiled the toner they could still use, it was noted, and monitored in their account.

    That was a few years back, and I’m not sure how it is done these days.

    I’m sure it’s a real picnic lately, with all the toner shortages and backorders.
    “I think you should treat good friends like a fine wine. That’s why I keep mine locked up in the basement.” - Tim Hawkins

  4. #4
    Service Manager 5,000+ Posts tsbservice's Avatar
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    Re: Pisses me off, what do you do?

    We are doing exactly what you do. Imho this helps a lot but is not ultimate fix, you just can't fix stupid.
    We are trying to have web/email monitoring on as much contract machines as we can and also not let them spare toners. Building fleet of same models at big customers is big advantage as we can have let's say 20 machines with only few spare toners left at customers.
    I feel your pain though.
    A tree is known by its fruit, a man by his deeds. A good deed is never lost, he who sows courtesy, reaps friendship, and he who plants kindness gathers love.

    Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused.

  5. #5
    Retired 10,000+ Posts
    Pisses me off, what do you do?

    slimslob's Avatar
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    Re: Pisses me off, what do you do?

    @remote took care of a lot of toner waste problems for us. Since most of our customers were with an hours drive of our office, we stopped leaving toner with most customers. Except for a few major customers where the purchasing maintained their inventory and required and kept track of consumption rates.

  6. #6
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    Re: Pisses me off, what do you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil B. View Post
    Are they calibrating the carts?

    Sent from my SM-G990U using Tapatalk

    Don't know, haven't been there yet. Most likely all they need to do is a color cal. The real issue is will they keep the old cartridges or not?
    The difference between Democrats and Republicans is.......

    One party tells lies

    and

    the other party doesn't tell the truth.

  7. #7
    RTFM!! 2,500+ Posts allan's Avatar
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    Re: Pisses me off, what do you do?

    Had a problem with copy shops stealing and selling toner or was running 30% coverage. The solution for print shops was that up to 5% coverage the company covers the rest the customer gets billed for. So if a toner did not make yield the rest was seen as overuse. It makes for extra work calculating the usage for those customers but was worth it.

    Went to a remote customer that got there toners couriered, it was a bizhub C35 they had like 12 Y 10 C 14 M and 7 K toners in stock! They just kept on ordering and the shop just delivered without question. Shop software must be able to flag overuse based on yields.
    Whatever

  8. #8
    Senior Tech 250+ Posts mloudy's Avatar
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    Re: Pisses me off, what do you do?

    10 years ago we agreed to a 5 year contract with what is now our largest customer. It was our first MPS. As it turns we also starting seeing the mass swapping of supplies. Printers would need a cyan image unit so they would replace all the toners in a attempt to clear the message and get it printing. Nope, that didn't fix it so then they would swap all the IU's and all those good supplies would be chucked in the trash.

    We had PrintTracker installed so we were alerted each time they did this. They tried many times and many way to fix this and they never could. Every time a new person gets put in charge they say "We need to fix this!". I send them the string of emails going back years and tell them it has been tried for years. After two years we met with them and showed them the loses we were suffering. They agreed that we could adjust the cpc and they would have to start buying toners and image units. They also agreed to place all their used supplies in gaylords and we would pick them up when full. Our aggrement was that we would return anything that had more than 25% life remaining. It isn't uncommon to find $1,000.00 worth of supplies in a gaylord. I find brand new toners still in unopened boxes. I feel much better knowing they have paid for those unused supplies and they are no longer included in the MPS agreement. We clean them up, rebox them and send them back. Win-win. I loath MPS.

    A few years ago one of the gaylords we picked up had every single crum chip broken off. I sent them pics and told them that the entire lot was not able to be recovered. Some of the toners weighed in the 70-90% full range but they were useless. They claimed they never could figure out who did it but it never happened again.

  9. #9
    Senior Tech 250+ Posts
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    Re: Pisses me off, what do you do?

    About the only thing that ever made sense to me is you are contracted for 200k copies per year, here is enough toner for 200k. If you waste toner, you must pay for additional. Give it to their account balance sheet right at beginning of contract. If they run out, oh well, sell them extra.

    I think this could be tailored to schools, churches, print shops. We currently compute a higher % cost of supplies to these during bidding. Expected toner expense for 200k is $250, give them $250 of toner. Expected toner expense is $300, give them $300 of toner on their balance sheet.

    Somehow the customer needs to be accountable for the toner they are given. I once had a customer throw a whole case of toner in the trash because of shipping damage. The toner was leaking in the case and the other boxes had toner all over them, so they were probably no good either was their excuse. We gave them a bill for $695 to replace that toner. Boy did the feathers fly, they threatened court, everything. How difficult would it have been just to call us, when in area we could have picked it up or to reject supply as being damaged by the shipper? No it went in the trash as they deemed it unusable.

    Although things are better with programs like fm audit etc. Customers still have no accountability for the toner we give them. Especially at upgrade time. Give them the amount of toner for their contract, anything more they pay for is what I think. Believe me if the customer has 10 cartridges for the year and they pay for excess, They will keep better track of where the toner is going. I suspect we all have customers stealing from us or just don't give a rip about supplies as they are "included".

    Is anyone doing the "you are contracted 200K copies", we have marked you for 200k of toner on your account, if you use it up prior to 200K, you will incur additional toner charge?

    Too bad toner is not included. Wish we could shoot the sales staff that came up with that idea.
    The difference between Democrats and Republicans is.......

    One party tells lies

    and

    the other party doesn't tell the truth.

  10. #10
    Retired 10,000+ Posts
    Pisses me off, what do you do?

    slimslob's Avatar
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    Re: Pisses me off, what do you do?

    I remember back in the days of the early plain paper copiers that used coated masters instead of drums. Each master was good for a fixed number of pages and then had to be changed. There was one Sharp dealer, I think it was Select Copy but it might also been Phil Hunter whose main office was in Fresno, who didn't sell service contracts with includes toner and masters. He sold a case of mastered bundled with enough toner, assuming normal usage, and included maintenance with the supplies.

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